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In ancient times, parent-child relationships were often marked by fear, either of rebellion or abandonment, resulting in the strict filial roles in, for example, ancient Rome and China.
Freud conceived of the Oedipal complex, the supposed obsession that young boys have towards their mother and the accompanying fear and rivalry with their father, and the Electra complex, in which the young girl feels that her mother has castrated her and therefore becomes obsessed with her father.
Romantic relationships may exist between two people of any gender, or among a group of people (see polyamory).
The single defining quality of a romantic relationship is the presence of love. Hazan and Shaver define love, using Ainsworth's attachment theory, as comprising proximity, emotional support, self-exploration, and separation distress when parted from the loved one.
With the increasing average age at marriage and more youths attending college and living with parents past their teens, the concept of a new period called emerging adulthood gained popularity.
This is considered a period of uncertainty and experimentation between adolescence and adulthood.
The study of interpersonal relationships involves several branches of the social sciences, including such disciplines as sociology, communication studies, psychology, anthropology, and social work.
Interpersonal ties are also a subject in mathematical sociology.
Earlier relationships also tend to be shorter and exhibit greater involvement with social networks.
Although proximity and contact usually decreases over time, sibling bonds continue to affect people throughout their lives.
Sibling relationships are affected by parent-child relationships, such that sibling relationships in childhood often reflect the positive or negative aspects of children's relationships with their parents.
Romantic relationships have been defined in countless ways, by writers, philosophers, religions, scientists, and in the modern day, relationship counselors.
Two popular definitions of love are Sternberg's Triangular Theory of Love and Fisher's theory of love.
The strain of 'internalized homo-negativity' and of presenting themselves in line with socially acceptable gender norms can reduce the satisfaction and emotional and health benefits they experience in their relationships.